Monday, July 14, 2008

Exploring a Different Galaxy...

Vintage coin-op machines are my first and real true passion when it comes to collecting and restoring . Lately I have been afflicted with a new craving for old cars and scooters. I have always wanted to pick up some old metal and I finally took the plunge on a 1966 Galaxie 500.

I spent some time thinking about what kind of car I should buy. One night while watching the movie "Zodiac" I noticed the sleek black Galaxie the detectives were riding around in throughout the movie. It reminded me of riding around in our brown "Streets of San Francisco " LTD and the Ford-blue Galaxie 500 that belonged to my Aunt . I come from a family of ford lovers so it just really felt right. Besides, after seeing what most of the classics are going for these days , a Galaxie was one of the few cars that would fit my budget. The search was on.

I never realized how difficult it would be to find a car worth purchasing. I looked everywhere and eventually started looking in neighboring states . Three times I would travel great distances only to find a misrepresented rust-bucket awaiting me. I was getting a little discouraged. Late one night while searching the web I came across a beautiful 2-owner Galaxie . This wasn't your typical Gal. She was equipped with a factory 7 liter . This car was one of only 8000 made with the big block 428 installed. It was love at first sight.

The car was several hundred miles away just south of Portland. I wasn't sure I could stand another let down if the car was yet another rust-bucket. I made the call . After talking to the owners I was pretty confident this would be the one. The car was originally purchased in Roseburg Oregon by a lady who worked at the Ford Dealership. After owning it for 32 years she sold the car to "Rockin Robin " and her husband Don . Robin and Don had decided it was time to sell the Gal and work on some of the other classic cars in their stable.

I flew out to Portland, caught a shuttle to Albany and waited for Robin to pick me up. I tried to block out all the memories of the previous disappointments and remain positive. I heard a faint rumbling of the 428 big block in the distance. As it grew louder I could only hope the car looked as good as it sounded. Here came Robin down the street and I was pleasantly surprised to see a car that looked even better in person than it had looked in the pictures.

The car has the original interior and was repainted the original color back in the 90's by the original owners. Don rebuilt the motor and transmission and added a few nice touches under the hood. The car was everything I wanted it to be and then some. She still needs a little mechanical, electrical and some detail work here and there but overall I was pleased.

The drive back to Boise was exhilarating . Sitting there listening to that 428 roar down the Interstate was a dream come true. I feel extremely priviledged to own and drive this car. It was apparent that Robin and Don were looking for the right buyer as much as I was looking for the right car. I bought this car to satisfy my own yearning but I have to admit, the reaction this car evokes from people on the street is amazing.

The paperwork passed on to me states the original owners paid $3300.00 for this car. The price has gone up a bit but was still a steal for the magic that it still holds. It was 42 years ago that this car rolled off the assembly line. The car is a nice blend of muscle and cruiser and is really a blast from the past .
Thanks Robin and Don. It really is a different Galaxie.

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